Answered By: Laura Sider
Last Updated: Mar 09, 2017     Views: 1382

Q: Where can I find information on Yale's 1953 goal study?
Answered by: Laura Sider

It has been determined that no “goals study” of the Class of 1953 actually occurred.  Over the years, we have received requests for information on a reported study based on a survey administered to the Class of 1953 in their senior year and a follow‑up study conducted ten years later.  This study has been described as how one's goals at graduation related to success and annual incomes achieved during the period.  The secretary of the Class of 1953, who had served in that capacity for many years, did not know of the study, nor did any of the fellow class members he questioned.  In addition, a number of Yale administrators were consulted and the records of various offices were examined in an effort to document the reported study.  There was no relevant record, nor did anyone recall the purported study of the Class of 1953, or of any other class.

 

The reported study was the subject of an article published in the September 1991 issue of Success magazine, in which it was stated that the three percent that had set specific long‑term goals at graduation later successfully represented ninety‑seven percent of the wealth of the class.  The author of the article, Ken Thuerback, president of Alpine Log Homes, informed a staff member that his source was an audio tape made by "Zig" Zigler, a well‑known personality of motivational techniques.  Mr. Thuerback then asked Mr. Zigler about his source and was told that he had only heard the statistics mentioned over the years, but had no concrete source for the information.

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